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Trusted Tips & Resources

Trusted Regina Financial Advisor Shares a Tip on Estate Planning Strategies

John Barabe has an unwavering commitment to quality and service which has enabled him to build and retain a successful practice in Regina. He and his team believe that planning with honesty and integrity are cornerstones to improving clients' quality of life. He applies his knowledge to help clients make the right choices when considering all the product and service options that exist in today's marketplace.

Here he shares a tip on Estate Planning Strategies.

Estate Planning Strategies



Many families are not aware of the estate planning options necessary to ensure their intentions are carried out on death.  Estate planning is complicated enough without adding family dynamics into the mix making preparation important.


With the current trend of living together without getting married many couples think that the same marital status that applies to taxation also applies to estate.  It does not.  

Upon death, without a valid will, a common law partner is not recognized as a spouse and would be excluded from a share in the estate.

Consideration and selection of an appropriate nominee guardian for minor children is an integral part of the estate planning process.  Why risk courts and government agencies intervening to make decisions.  You need certainty that the care of your child’s life is in the right hands.  Emotional toll is only compounded with the potential of inheritances that may be tied up and or depleted in the process.


Although a will only makes up a portion of an estate plan, there are many unintended mistakes that are commonly made.  For example, many people enter into identical wills with their spouse or partner.  

What few are aware of is by law the survivor may not change or revoke his or her will after the death of their partner.  Changes could be contested causing family problems and unintended beneficiaries.  

What if the surviving spouse develops additional needs?  What if one of the children divorce and both are beneficiaries?  What if a surviving spouse wishes to make special arrangements for a caregiver or charity that helped either party in a time of need?  The variations are endless.  This common problem is solved by adding a simple provision to your wills. 


Sometimes seemingly small word changes can have unintended but substantial legal ramifications that result in dramatic changes to the distribution of assets from what was planned.  Small changes can undo best intentions and unfortunately family conflict can result.


The process John follows for estate planning includes:


  1. Complete an estate planning checklist.
  2. Meet with you and your spouse or partner and clarify and confirm desires and objectives
  3. Ensure the people involved with your estate are aware of the intentions.  This can include beneficiaries, executors (or executrixes), trustees and guardians.  
  4. Then implement.  All the other steps are not valuable without action.

Make sure your beneficiaries are taken care of, according to your wishes. 

John Barabe and his team carefully consider your needs, goals and dreams in order to implement a well-constructed financial strategy, so that you can have peace of mind about your hard-earned money and financial future. They can simplify your life by addressing your complete financial well-being, which encompasses everything from:

John Barabe is a Trusted Financial Advisor


The opinions expressed within this article/communication are those of the Financial Advisor and are not necessarily those of Keybase Financial Group Inc. Any data provided is for illustration purposes only. Clients and prospective clients should always read a product prospectus and fully understand all of the risks associated with the product before purchasing.

Third party publications are not prepared by Keybase Financial Group Inc.The opinions, estimates and projections contained in the publication are those of the author as of the date of the indicated and are subject to change without notice. Keybase Financial Group Inc. makes no representation or warranty, express or implied, in respect therein and accepts no liability whatsoever for any loss arising from any use of or reliance on the reports or its contents. The provisions of the publication are not to be constructed as an offer to sell or a solicitation for or an offer to buy any securities.

Trusted Regina Lawyer Robert MacKay explains how having primary and secondary wills

MacKay and McLean provide the professional services of a large Regina law firm, with the intimate attention of a small firm. The legal process can be daunting and overwhelming, but it doesn't have to be. MacKay and McLean is with you every step of the way.

MacKay and McLean are TRUSTED REGINA LAWYERS


It is said that in this world, nothing is certain but death and taxes. Modern estate planning aims to assist individuals to navigate both of these unpleasant certainties.  Preparing double wills is an estate planning technique which minimizes the number of probate fees (estate administration taxes) payable on death by your estate.

Primary and Secondary wills 


Double Wills – Primary (Public Asset Will) and Secondary (Private Asset Will)
Depending on the nature of a person’s assets, it is often beneficial to have a “primary” Will to deal with real property and assets held in financial institutions (public assets) and a “secondary” Will to deal with assets held in a private corporation, personal effects, vehicles, the proceeds of life insurance policies payable to the estate and any other asset which does not require probate to pass to a beneficiary (private assets).
Probate is required in select circumstances, and when it is required for the estate trustee to effectively deal with one asset in a will then all assets governed by that will must be probated. In that event, the estate will be required to pay the estate administration tax on the combined value of all assets governed by the will. Savvy individuals can avoid this problem through the use of multiple wills and proper drafting.

The use of multiple wills received judicial approval in Ontario in Granovsky Estate v. Ontario, 1998 CanLII 14913 (ON SC). Therein the court considered the testator’s use of two wills: a ‘Primary Will’ and a ‘Secondary Will’. The Secondary Will exclusively governed the testator’s private company shares, amounts owing to the testator from said companies, and assets held in trust for the testator by said companies. In other words, the secondary estate consisted solely of those assets that the estate trustee could deal without needing probate. Whereas the Primary Will governed all of the testator’s other assets, for which probate was required. The court in Granovsky found that there was no prohibition in the applicable legislation which could prevent a testator from having both a primary and secondary will – a testator may plan his or her estate as she or he sees fit. Notably, the court held that there was no requirement to submit the Secondary Will to probate or pay the estate administration tax on the value of the assets governed by the Secondary Will.

Following Granovsky, Ontario has witnessed a marked increase in the popularity of multiple wills as a method for effective estate planning. Complimentary to the reduced tax liability are the added benefits of ease of administration of one’s estate and privacy, as a probated will is a public document. These combined benefits make preparing multiple wills a prudent investment for the common sense business owner.


For advice, Robert MacKay's team provides professional, personalized service and with their assistance, you can rest assured that your real estate transactions will be handled with the utmost consideration and care.

They  provide a full range of legal services including:

  • Real Estate & Mortgages
  • Wills & Estates
  • Family Law & Divorce
  • Commercial & Corporate Law
  • Litigation & Personal Injury

ROBERT Mackay is your TRUSTED REGINA LAWYERS!


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